The savings market has been a furore of activity in recent weeks as the banks and building societies battled it out to attract our money. Unfortunately for savers there has been a marked decrease in the number of providers raising rates or launching new competitive products this week.
Despite this, figures released from the Nationwide Building Society show that consumer confidence about their ability to save in the future has hit an all time high. The importance that consumers place on savings has risen to the highest level since the UK entered into the recession.
Unemployment continues to rise, as does many people's fears over how they will cope financially should they lose their jobs, making saving for a rainy day more of a priority in peoples lives. However, 46 per cent of people surveyed believe that government policies discourage them from saving.
Santander leads the way
From 1 September, savers looking to fix the rate on their savings for two years are being offered a rate of 4.20 per cent through Abbey, Alliance & Leicester and Bradford and Bingley. Savers can invest between £10,000 and £2 million into the bond, which is operated in branch, online or by telephone. Once opened, further additions are not permitted and access is available on closure only.
Reza Attar-Zadeh, Director of Savings and Investments, commented: "Fixed rates continue to prove popular as savers look to lock in to base rate beating returns. We're pleased to be able to offer this new highly competitive rate available at all of our 1,300 branches countrywide. We continue to remain committed to offering customers savings accounts with competitive rates that enable people to save and plan for their futures. With the backing of Santander, as one of the world's largest banks, savers have peace of mind and confidence when saving with us."
Innovation from Leeds
Leeds Building Society has launched an innovative new product aimed at helping the over 60s fund their winter fuel bills. The Winter Fuel Saver account pays a fixed rate of 5.00 per cent until 28 February 2010, after which the account pays a fixed rate of 0.25 per cent until 31 August 2010. Interest is paid monthly and savers can invest between £100 and £1 million into the account.
Act fast to avoid disappointment
Barnsley Building Society is urging savers to act fast if they want to take advantage of their market leading fixed rate bonds. The society is paying 5.40 per cent on its five year bond, 5.15 per cent on its four year bond and 5.00 per cent on its three year bond. Savers can invest between £100 and £500,000 into the online operated bonds, with monthly interest available for those looking for a regular income. Further additions are available whilst the issue remains open, but earlier access is not permitted during the term.
New one year bond from BoS
Bank of Scotland has just launched a new One Year Fixed Rate Bond paying 3.05 per cent, or 3.01 per cent for savers opting for monthly interest. Savers can invest between £500 and £9 million into the bond, which is operated in branch, online or by telephone. Once opened, further additions are not permitted and access is only available after 6 months subject to at least 30 days' notice.
Rachel Thrussell, Principal Consultant - Banking and Economic Insight at Moneyfacts.co.uk commented: "Many savers do not want to lock away their money for a long period of time. This bond combines a competitive rate of interest with the ability to access fund through the term if required."
Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.
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